Policies Facilitation To Employees By Human Resource Department of
Airtel Bangladesh Limited
Airtel Bangladesh Ltd. is a GSM-based cellular operator in Bangladesh. Airtel is the sixth mobile phone carrier to enter the Bangladesh market, and originally launched commercial operations under the brand name “Warid Telecom” on May 10, 2007. Warid Telecom International LLC, an Abu Dhabi based consortium, sold a majority 70% stake in the company to India’s BhartiAirtel Limited for US$300 million. Bharti Airtel Limited took management control of the company and its board, and rebranded the company’s services under its own Airtel brand from December 20, 2010. The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission approved the deal on Jan 4, 2010.
BhartiAirtel made a fresh investment of USD 300 million to rapidly expand the operations of Warid Telecom and have management and board control of the company. This is the largest investment in Bangladesh by an Indian company. Dhabi Group continues as a strategic partner retaining 30% shareholding and has its nominees on the Board of the Company.
The new funding is being utilized for expansion of the network, both for coverage,capacity, and introduction of innovative products and services. As a result of this additional investment, the overall investment in the company will be in the region of USD 1 billion.
Objectives of the Study
The report is prepared on the “Compensation Activities of Human Resource Department of Airtel Bangladesh Limited” with the thought of getting in depth of the compensation activities and policies of ABL.
The broad objective is to know about the compensation activities of Airtel Bangladesh Limited.
To have better orientation on compensation activities specially- compensation policy and practices, employee handbook, KUDOS reward and recognition system, employee appointment letter issuance of Airtel Bangladesh Limited.
Methodology of the Study
The following methodology will be followed for the study based on observation and interpretation. Data sources are scheduled on an informal discussion with officials, company website and observation while working in different desks.
The secondary data sources are annual reports, manuals, and policies of ABL. To identify the implementation and repayment practice, practical experience and observation was done.
History of Airtel Bangladesh Limited
Airtel Bangladesh Ltd. is a GSM-based celluer operator in Bangladesh. Airtel is the sixth mobile phone carrier to enter the Bangladesh market, and originally launched commercial operations under the brand name “Warid Telecom” on May 10, 2007. Warid Telecom International LLc, an Abu Dhabi based consortium, sold a majority 70% stake in the company to India‟s BhartiAirtel Limited for US$300 million. BhartiAirtel Limited took management control of the company and its board, and rebranded the company’s services under its own airtel brand from December 20, 2010. The Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission approved the deal on Jan 4, 2010.
Packages offered by Airtel Bangladesh Limited
Airtel Bangladesh has segmented its‟ product line under 5 (five) category and more are on the way to be introduced. At present airtel provides both post-paid and pre-paid connection plans. The post-paid plan is branded and marketed across the country under the name airtel Postpaid; the pre-paid segment is branded and marketed as airtel Prepaid. Furthermore there are International Roaming, Value Added Services and MCommerce.
Some of the airtel prepaid packages are: Adda. Hoi Choi, Manuted pack, Valentines pack, Shobai, Golpo, Kotha, Foorti, Dolbool, Bijoy 016.
The airtel postpaid is categorized under 3 packages which are designed to assist one‟s professional and personal communication needs.
- Airtel Exclusive
- Airtel Classic
- Airtel Advantage
Airtel exclusive brings the highest fnf features and 1 second pulse that will enable to manage different calls efficiently. Airtel classic offers a flexible tariff plan that helps to explore a wide service and keep overall cost to a reasonable limit. Airtel advantage comes with an attractive flat tariff plan, large close calling circle which makes one‟s communication simple.
Airtel-Postpaid and Airtel Prepaid user enjoy various Value Added Services (VAS), such as SMS, MMS, GPRS, 64K SIM, Duel SIM product, Corporate packages for product advertising via SMS, and a host of other features. However, International roaming is available only to airtel postpaid users.
Organogram of Airtel Bangladesh Limited
BhartiAirtel South Asian operations are headed by Mr. Sanjay Kapoorwho reports to company‟s Chairman Mr. Sunil BhartiMittal. Airtel‟s South Asian operations are geographically divided into three zones and each zone is headed by one CEO. The CEO of Airtel Bangladesh Ltd. Reports to Mr. Ajay Puri, who is leading Bangladesh and Western par of Indian operations of Airtel. The management team is named as Airtel Leadership Board (ALB) in Bangladesh. All the fuctional heads are a member of this team which is headed by CEO and Managing Director Mr. Chris Tobit.
The workforce in Airtel Bangladesh Limited combines total of 13 departments with their respective functions. Combining all the below divisions the management team is build:
- Customer Care
- Supply Chain Management
- Operational Excellence
- Human Resources & Administration
- Information Technology
- Corporate Affairs
- Legal & Secretarial
- CEO Office
- Corporate Assurance Group
KUDOS Reward and Recognition
In a competitive business climate, more business owners are looking at improvements in quality while reducing costs. Meanwhile, a strong economy has resulted in a tight job market. So while small businesses need to get more from their employees, their employees are looking for more out of them. Employee reward and recognition programs are one method of motivating employees to change work habits and key behaviors to benefit a small business.
To retain its employees and creating a good impression, ABL designs and updates its reward and recognition program time to time; which is however named as “Airtel KUDOS Reward & Recognition Program”. The aim of this program is to designing innovating and motivating ways to engage and attract people towards the organization.
The keys to developing a reward program are as follows:
- Identification of company or group goals that the reward program will support
- Identification of the desired employee performance or behaviors that will reinforce the visions of ABL.
- Determination of key measurements of the performance or behavior, based on the individual or group‟s previous achievements
- Determination of appropriate rewards
- Communication of program to employees.
In order to reap benefits such as increased productivity, the HR team of airtel designs the reward program in such a way that the company or group‟s goal must be identified and the behaviors or performance will contribute to this. The reward program can be financial and non-financial as well. HR team of airtel Bangladesh focuses on the non-financial rewards than financial because it is long lasting and more awaited remuneration to the employees.
To achieve its vision by 2015 of being the most loved brand and enriching the lives of millions; ABL continuously works to achieve its 3 values- alive, inclusive and respectful. A total reward approach has developed for the achievement of the values- total cash, benefits, recognition, development & career opportunities & work life balance.
For the better understanding of the company aspect, I have conducted a SWOT analysis. The SWOT analysis has many strengths and opportunities that this company can use to build more innovative and new strategies to keep the company operations stable. Many strategies can be introduces from these points.
- A recognizable brand name
- Operations in global basis
- Strong economic and financial base
- Competitve pricing strategy
- Round the clocj customer service
- Poor network coverage
- Below standard geographical coverage
- Poor quality of network
- Full 3G network usage
- Increased use of internet packages
- Initiation of land phone services
- Threat of new entrants
- Strict governemtn rules and regulations
- Environemntal disasters
- Rival prices/ Price war
Training & Development
Training and Development, is undeniably an inseparable and pivotal part of Human Resource Management which is recurred in different forms time to time by conscious organizations who believe their employees, whether newbie or experienced, to be assets with value. It encompasses employees acquiring knowledge and learning new skills not only to benefit themselves in terms of their career progression, but also help build the organization‟s position in the face of tremendous competition.
With the urge to maintain cost leadership, Airtel Bangladesh devises training accordingly, although it does provide good facilities to the trainees with the motive to make them multiskilled.
In terms of determining training needs, there exist functional academies which determine these needs. For example, let‟s consider the finance academy. Here the employees need to obtain a total of 14 skills and the whole team is assessed to check whether the relevant skills are present or not which are 7-8 apparently including the skills specific to finance related activities. The reporting manager conducts the skill gap analysis by rating the skills of employees under a scale of 1-5 and the ones lagging behind in say, a particular skill or more (below 3) are given training for that or those.
Airtel, although spends only 2% of their payroll cost on training and development, yet the training provided within this limited allocation is worth mentioning.
For conducting some of the training sessions, single floors of two hotels altogether, namely Lakeshore and Lake Bridge are used. After joining, employees are given overview about the whole organization for a week, followed by giving them personal laptops for official use and guidelines on using them. Then field work takes place for a month (territory officers for example) where they learn from the seniors through observation. 6-7 months later, training sessions like group discussion, seminar (generally Pakistani or Indian trainees share valuable insight on specific topics), live game show (based on real life scenario, dealing with customer by a salesman for example), in- basket are provided. The already mentioned training methods including simulation training comprise 70% of the overall training process or programs, 20% is based on case studies and the rest, 10% is based upon presentation. And if we try to comprise all these under one banner, 70% is dedicated towards on the job training, 20% on leadership competency and 10% on functional level.
A well reputed training centre, BRAC CDM is used for leadership training and team building for individuals (called young leaders) who have high prospects in taking command of the company in the long run, also includes the already experienced ones who possess the abilities to handle the organization. Project workers get specialized training on „six sigma‟ (aimed at improving quality of service and products in line with the service, bearing in mind that Airtel is the part of service industry and also ensuring the best standards in terms of overall employee, management satisfaction, policy deployment, new hire process quality and cycle time etc.) where they thrive to achieve the „certified black belt‟, a sign of the ability to demonstrate team leadership, understand team dynamics and assign team member roles and responsibilities which is aided by
- Building a competency model that will help identify candidates with the right mix of technical, team, and leadership skills and abilities.
- Creating job descriptions that help candidates fully understand the position and expectations prior to signing on.
- Developing a retention strategy that will help ensure Black Belts complete their rotation and the organization recoups its investment in training and development.
All these training sessions may seem to give an impression that the evaluation process must be quite vigorous as well whereas on the contrary, it is not. We all know about Kirkpatrick‟s four levels of training evaluation. Surprisingly, out of the four stages, (reaction, learning, behavior and results); only the reaction of the employees is measured through questionnaires and asking
them as well about their thoughts regarding the training program. The rest three stages are not taken into consideration as Airtel feels them to be time consuming and thus, gives only a glimpse at the job performance which is more likely to take shape few months later. The reason being, perhaps, that the training programs are designed in such a manner that the employees at the receiving end will automatically benefit from them and a reflection of that will be seen in their actual jobs in the long run. However, it is recommended that Airtel Bangladesh pays special attention to this particular area if they are to stay much ahead in terms of competition.
Integrating training with performance management systems and compensation
Surprisingly, Airtel integrates their training with performance management only and not with compensation. As per their claim, the leadership competency is the area which is scrutinized thoroughly under performance management after vigorous training is provided. So it bears a clear proof that building leadership skills is the prime focus of Airtel. This is undoubtedly praiseworthy. However, not integrating other aspects like on the job training and functional level training with performance management systems may cause problems in the long run as not every individual is bound to be a leader and whatever position they are holding and whatever tasks they are incorporated with, should be noticed with care and should follow a stream of continuous feedback so that they are always motivated. And, compensation should be integrated to get the best results. Otherwise, as it‟s said in theory, a training program that is not linked to the organization‟s performance and compensation has far less chance of success than others (in this case, GP, Robi, Banglalink).
An employee handbook, sometimes also known as an employee manual or staff handbook, is a book given to employees by an employer. Usually, the employee handbook contains information about company policies and procedures. It may also form part of an employee‟s terms and conditions of employment because if the organization employ five or more people, it is a requirement of the Health and Safety at Work etc and to have a written statement of the employee‟s health and safety policy.
The employee handbook is an excellent place to bring together employment and job-related information which employees need to know, such as holiday arrangements, company rules and disciplinary and grievance procedures. It can also provide useful source of information to new staff as part of the induction process. A written employee handbook gives clear advice to employees and creates a culture where issues are dealt with fairly and consistently.
Airtel Employee Handbook has been prepared as a guided to the employment politics, procedures, practices and benefits meant for the employees of Airtel Bangladesh Limited. It is believe that, it is not possible to anticipate every situation which may arise in the work place, or to provide information that answers every possible question. However, maximum effort has been made to provide optimum information for comprehensive understanding of the associates. The management of airtel has the right to modify, supplement, rescind or revise any provisions of
The Employee Handbook from time to time as it is deemed necessary or appropriate as per management‟s prerogative and discretion. Such changes made, if any, will be advised and disseminated to the associates accordingly.
Airtel is constantly striving to improve its politics and procedures and the services it provides to its associates. In case, employees want to give any suggestion, they need to provide the same to the Head of Human Resources Department. Such changes shall be evaluated and, if demand fit and proper, shall be incorporated into the handbook at appropriate time with the approval of the management.
Company philosophy of Airtel is constituted of Open Door Policy, Equal Employment Opportunity, Affirmative Action, and Breaking of Glass Ceiling Effect that are reflected in its overall organizational culture. Such elements are briefly highlighted below:
Open Door Policy
All the associates have the right and are encouraged to speak freely by ensuring mutual respect with their supervisors and line managers about their job-related concerns. However, there is a laid down procedure to be followed to access any senior team member and CEO, if an associate has any issue or problem.
Equal Employment Opportunity
Airtel is an Equal Opportunity Employer (EOE) and provides equal employment opportunity to the existing male and female associates against any vacant position. In case, there is no suitable resource found within the company, HR department advertises such position externally. EOE is the management commitment reflected in the internal and external hiring process.
Affirmative action leads to pursue and implement „merit‟ having no discrimination due to gender, race, colour, religion, sex or national origin. Recruitment & Selection policy of Airtel is free from such encumbrances and provides equal opportunity to all internal and external candidates for filling any position in the company.
Breaking of Glass Ceiling Effect
Glass ceiling is a perceived barrier in the growth and advancement of the female associates. The associates in Airtel are evaluated and appraised based upon their performance and merit in their perspective roles. Vertical and horizontal growth of all employees (male and female) is the result of their performance and its effective measurement. Every associate as the equal right to perform grow and continue as an important part of Airtel Family in achieving the set organizational goals.
Merit is the Sole Criterion
Merit is the sole criterion in the hiring and career advancement of the associates. Transparency is practiced during the course of hiring is judged and finalized through panel interviews whereas for vertical growth of the associates, bi-annual performance appraisal is used as a tool to measure their performance against the given objectives to reach a final decision.
Critical Observations and Recommendations
While working very closely to the Human Resource team of Airtel, I came up with certain observations and recommendations towards the organization:
- Working hour of Airtel Bangladesh is from 10:00am- 07:00pm; where most of the telecom industris in the country ends at 05:00pm. Even though the target is to reduce man power, it slows down productivity in a certain way. Thus, work presure of the employees should be reduced by reducing the working hour from 07:00pm-05:00pm. If needed more employees should be recruited on a temporary basis.
- Employees of Airtel Bangladesh are getting paid high than other telecom industries such as orascom, ericsson and etc. but the outcome is relatively poor in the market. Thus, it should be measured or a balance among the income and the outcome should be maintained.
- Airtel depends a lot on Bdjobs.com for getting CVs for Territory Manager, Key Account Manager, Manager Compliance; most of the time good CVs are not found there so then HR takes people from reference which is time consuming, as a result HR cannot meet the demand of different departments in supplying employees as they require.
- More training can be introduced to improve skills of the employees.
Recent analysis and literature demonstrate in the topic of “Policies Facilitation to Employees By Human Resource Department of Airtel Bangladesh Limited” show that the policies adopted are for the well-being of the employed to make them engaged towards the organization and the environment.
The study examined the overall policies that Human Resource takes and updates time to time. The research would suggest that in an agency such as the study site, where the workers are significantly engages, production outcomes would be high on the basis of the policies that the company facilitates.
Even though Airtel Bangladesh held 4th position on the basis of customer subscription, they are trying to become the market leader since the value itself targeted to be the most loved brand by 2015, employees are the one who needed to be engaged towards their work and without which this value cannot be achievable. Considering this in their mind, Human Resource team of Airtel Bangladesh trying their best to recruit the best employee from the market and implies durable policies that might help its‟ employees achieving the goal.